It seems that bad days are not over for the app-based transportation network and taxi company, Uber. At least not after this recent development which can leave Uber terrorised. According to the recent report published in Buzzfeed, app-based taxi operators are forming a global alliance to compete with Uber.
Cab services like Ola and GrabTaxi are possibly going to join hands to create a global taxi network that could potentially share knowledge and technology among each other to provide seamless and better services to users across the globe.
This alliance is not restricted to only Asia, as San Francisco-based Flywheel, another taxi service provider has also hinted to a global taxi service alliance to unite all taxi service providers across the globe. Flywheel officials mention that such an alliance could be the thing that taxi services need to be unified globally as it can possibly lead to cross booking of various services through a single app.
Founded in 2013, the company has already had success in its existing markets. Flywheel has 85% of taxi drivers in San Francisco on their platform. Soon, Flywheel will begin to apply that same model to markets outside of the U.S. in the hope of aggregating a large chunk of the supply of taxi drivers onto one platform.
This global alliance is planning to introduce features like cross-booking or in-app integration to each other’s services. Sources close to the development also suggested that Japan-based venture capital firm Softbank Capital has helped to create this potential global taxi alliance.
It is to be noted that Softbank recently invested millions into two Asian taxi-hailing services. It had invested $250 Mn in GrabTaxi and $210 Mn in India’s OlaCabs.
On this development, Brian Cu, the co-founder of the Philippines-based GrabTaxi, said, “He has heard industry discussions of forming a global taxi alliance among like-minded apps. It would include knowledge sharing and maybe cross-booking. If you’re in the Philippines, you can book a GrabTaxi using the OlaCabs app; it’s in the realm of possibilities, so maybe Softbank is trying to do that.”
GrabTaxi and OlaCabs operate in many of the same markets as Uber, though both tap into the existing supply of taxi drivers in their markets, but do not include operators of unregistered private vehicles, as Uber does.
If formed, this international alliance is sure to hurt Uber’s markets. This will also provide an easy access to cabs globally. It would surely be nice to use the same app when in a different country to hail local cabs. This concept will definitely help other taxi operators to fight against Uber’s monopoly.